A VERY special guest proved to be on the money with his advice to students during his first ever school visit as the Governor of the Bank of England.
Canadian banker and one of the world’s leading monetary experts Mark Carney spent more than an hour with staff and Year 9, 10 and 11 pupils at Longfield School.
He spoke candidly about his personal life, economic views and offered students sound advice for the future.
“When I was at a school like this in Canada I was drilled in the basics, such as maths and science, and my teachers told me I could achieve anything I wanted to,” said Mr Carney, the 120th Governor and first ever foreigner to head the financial institution.
“I liked economics and got into Harvard University before getting a job with an investment bank in London. I learned two things; try to become an expert in something – I chose credit risk – and work in a team. There are very few successful individuals; you need to draw on the skills and perspectives of others.”
He urged students to find a career that they felt passionate about. “If you do that good things happen,” he said. “People who pursue a career for the money or because they feel they should tend to be unhappy and burn out. If you are passionate about something it is so much easier to stick with it.”
Mr Carney had high praise for the British economy and the North-East, which was the only region in the country to export more than it imported. The Bank of England was leading the way in stabilizing the global markets, he said.
The Governor then answered a series of students’ questions, ranging from Europe, bank notes and interest rates to what sort of car he drove, what he planned to do after he finished in banking and what he did in his spare time.
He also talked about the positive impact of immigration in filling skills shortages, his family and his favourite football team, Everton.
“I have really enjoyed visiting Longfield and the students asked some fantastic
questions,” he said.
Student Andrew Lambert, 16, said: “Mr Carney seemed a really nice person and it was fascinating to hear how he balances his busy and important job with his family life.”
Head teacher Susan Johnson said: “It is still hard to believe that we were the first school in the country to enjoy a visit by Mr Carney.
“It was an immense privilege having him in school and I know he was a true inspiration to students and staff.”